Medical Q&As

Antidepressants - use for how long?

I was on antidepressants for about 6 months and came off them without consulting my doctor. I did this about 4 months ago. Now I am wondering if I made the right choice. I did feel they were beneficial at the time. What do you think?

Depression can be a recurrent disorder and the general consensus is that a depressed person needs to take antidepressant treatment for at least six months in order to stave off the possibility of relapse. If you are experiencing any symptoms suggestive of a recurrence of your condition I would suggest that you return to your doctor and discuss the possibility of renewing therapy. However, since it is four months since you stopped the treatment it is possible that the six months of treatment that you have already received may have been adequate. If your mood is good and you are feeling well it is reasonable to do nothing further.